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How to Get Media Into the Computer for Editing II - Edius Tutorial

If you have started to add clips you are probably asking yourself, "Why didn't Edius ask me to assign a tape name before logging the tape?" You are also probably asking yourself, "do I have to name every clip manually?" "Why can't I name the first clip and then have the program "auto name" the remaining clips on that tape with an auto increment?" "I see that Edius is adding a random file name, but it is not the one that I asked for or want." These are good questions.
Fortunately, until the Canopus programmers tune up this utility, there is workaround. It may seem a little awkward at first, but once you do it a couple of times, it's no big deal. When you have finished logging all of the clips that you want from a tape, go to your batch capture window, and in the spreadsheet- like list, find the column that is called "Reel No", and click on the first field so that the cell opens up for you, ready to take your input. Next, holding your shift key down, click on the very last clip so that that field opens up to take your input. You should now have all of your clips selected with just the bottom cell of "Reel No" column, open - ready for input.

Type in the name you want to assign to that tape, hit enter, and you will see your tape name assigned to all of the Reel No fields. You can then do the same thing over in the "file name" column. This time, select the bottom one first. Holding your shift key down, select the top entry. Enter your name of choice and the rest will be added automatically, with a sequential name extent ion. It helps if you give that first file name a good sequential start as in the example below.
Not too bad for a work-around! Just be sure to do it here, because for some strange reason, you are not able to do this, multiple-entry-trick in the bin window.
One last thing you should set here is the hard drive that you want the clips to be digitized to. Unfortunately, unlike the the capture utility, there is no pop up window that asks you what drive you want the media saved to. By default, Edius will save the clips to the SAME drive as your project. (This is not a good practice. If the hard drive that has you clips should go bad, you can easily re-digitze (or Re-transfer) your off-line clips to another drive. If the drive that goes down has you project files on it as well, you are out of luck, unless you are in the practice of saving backups to other drives.)
In the same way that you multiple-selected tape and file names, multiple-select the file folder icons beside the filename, Making sure that all of the clips in your batch are selected, choose your drive and location from the pop-up window.

Capturing the Whole Tape:
Lets give this system a try. However, before we start capturing, lets take a look at our "Deck Settings". Go to the menu option Settings/Application Settings and choose "Deck Settings".
Make sure that "Confirm filename" is checked and the "Before Capture" is selected. Also, under "Automatically divide files" that you at least have the following two boxes checked: "At time code Break" and "When the recorded time data changes".

Apply the changes, and hit OK to close the window. We are ready to capture!
There are two ways to proceed at this point. Once you see the video from your camera being displayed in the "Play" monitor, and can control your play device with the control buttons at the bottom of the monitor, you are ready to capture. Hit F9, and you will be presented with a dialogue box that will let you choose what hard drive you would like your video to be saved to, and an opportunity to set up a naming convention for your capture session.

Lets take them one by one.
File Save Location: Generally speaking, you should select a hard drive that is different then the hard drive that your operating system and Edius software is located on. It should also not be the same drive that the project file is on. If you are capturing to Canopus HQ, you will need to select your fastest drive, preferably a striped Raid array. Use the Browse button to navigate to the hard drive that you want the video files to be saved to. Create a new folder, if needed.
File Name: It is here, if you will allow me to pull out my soap box and rant for a moment, that I find to be one of the weakest links in the Edius system. With any NLE software program that I have worked with, the moment that you insert a new tape into your deck or camera, a window will pop open and you will be asked to enter the name of the tape. Edius does not do this. The curious thing is that the metadata database system of Edius allows for a tape name, in a field designated as "Reel No.", but no where in the capture process does it allow for the user to designate the current tape being captured! Thus, if you turn on "Reel No" in the bin window, as one of the fields displayed, it is all blank.

Casual users of Edius, may ask what is the big deal. Why is it important that the clips are referenced with a tape name, or "Reel No"? If you have ever had a project go "off line" because of a hard drive failure, and you need to rebuild a project, or even revisit a project a couple of years after production was finished and need to re-capture the footage, most NLE programs provide an automated way of re-capturing all of your footage. You start the process, and the software asks you to simply insert the appropriate tapes as needed. Curiously again, Edius has this function of rebuilding the project, even to the point of asking the user to Insert "Reel No. xxx", but if your Reel No fields are all blank, and if you have time codes from 20 different tapes in your project, Edius has no way of telling you what "reel" or tape to insert, when.
If you are using the "Capture" tool to get your footage, the only work around to this problem, that I know of, short of manually entering Tape names, is to incorporate your tape name into the file name. For example, in a current project that I am working on about a flood in Nepal, I have named my tapes, Nepal0801, Nepal0802, Nepal0803, etc. (The 08 represents the year, the following two numbers the number of the tape.) So, when it comes time to enter a "File name" in this dialogue box, I enter the tape name. When I put in my first tape for capture I put in Nepal0801. Then I hit capture and Edius begins the process of capturing the whole tape. As the program automatically divides the file at every pause of the camera, it also assigns a unique filename, based on my initial entry of Nepal0801. Now, should any of your clips go off line, at least you will know what tape find the lost footage on.
This work-around still does not allow for a rebuild of the project that can utilize the feature of, "Insert Reel No xxx", so let me show you another work-around, using the batch capture tool.
1. Enter the Batch Capture tool (F10)
2. Delete any entries that may be there from a previous batch session. (Once you are familiar with this process, Skip to #5)
3. Insert your first tape.
4. Play your tape from the point that you would like to start your capture, and set your in point ( the "I" key). Let your tape roll for a few seconds and set an out point (the "O" key) and then "add your selection" to the batch capture window, (Ctrl/B, ..... unless you have changed that to something else, like the enter key)
5. In the "Reel No" column, enter the name of your tape.
6. in the "Out" Column, Change the time code to the point on the tape where you want to end your capture. If you are capturing your whole tape, this would be something like 01:05:00:00, depending on your camera, and assuming that you have uninterrupted time-code to the end of your tape. (If you have a lot of time code breaks on your tape and your time code keeps resetting to 00:00:00:00, this method is not going to work for you. To get get continuous time code when shooting, either "black" your tapes before the shoot, or avoid looking at your footage in the field, while shooting)
7. Change the "File name" to a name that best identifies the footage. I like to use the name of the tape itself. When I name my tapes I use a convention of Project Name, year, Tape Number. That way the File name itself helps identify its source.
8. Click on the small file folder icon at the end of the File Name Field, to choose a hard drive to save your footage to.
9. Click on the "Capture" button. Edius will ask you to insert the Reel No that you have supplied. If that tape is still in your deck, just go ahead and hit enter.

All going well, Edius should now capture your entire tape, assigning a reel number and auto incremented file names to all of your clips. When it comes time to capture tape two, simply change the data in the Reel No and File Name fields to reflect the information about your next tape and you are ready to capture tape two. Just make sure that the little check mark at the far right of the entry is still on. If not, just click on it once to check the box once more.
I know this is a convoluted work around for what is a major oversight in Edius. I have been an "advocate for change" of this weakness, ever since I started using Edius three years ago, but it seems to fall on deaf ears, or gets "lost in translation". We will see what version 5.0 will bring. Hopefully we will finally have a mature capture utility.
Version 5.x
Thankfully, Version 5 has solved the problem of identifying Tape names, or "Reel No" in the capture tool. If you have not upgraded your software to 5.0, this one feature alone is worth the cost of the upgrade! (Not to mention the many other features) Order yours today!
In version five, as soon as your camera is connected, you will be presented with the following pop up:

Uncheck the box for "UserBit is used as a Reel No" and enter the name of the tape you till be transferring in the field that opens up:

I use the naming convention of project or location, year, and a three digit number starting with 001.
Now, when you go to capture, (F9) you will get this pop up:

Notice how the "Reel No" is already inserted! Now, change the Filename and the Folder/Hard Drive to where the clips will be saved.

You will notice that Edius defaults to a filename of "cap" and the current date. You can use whatever you want here. I still like to have the file names reference the tape. Edius will use whatever you type here and then add an auto increment to the divided files that come off the tape as it captures.
The "Folder" field, is asking where you would like to save the video clips to. By default, Edius will have you save the clips to the same drive and folder that the project is saved to. It is better to keep these separate. Choose a separate drive and folder, using the "Browse" button.
Notice the results ....

Edius has properly assigned Reel No's to the database and assigned file names, or "Clip Names" to each file. Wonderful! Now if you ever need to rebuild a project from a lost or damaged drive, Edius will be able to tell you what "Reel No" or tape to ingest.
Happy capturing!

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